On 15th November, a biotechnological research team from the Chinese agrotechnical company, KingAgroot, published a research paper in the world’s top plant science journal, Nature Plants (IF=15.793).
The research, entitled, “A Donor DNA-free CRISPR-Cas-based Approach to Gene Knock-up in Rice,” uses genome editing to greatly increase the expression level of target genes under donor-DNA-free conditions, creating a non-GMO rice variety resistant to bipyrazone and fluroxypyr, which offer a different action mechanism.
After nearly 10 years of development, starting from CRISPR/Cas9 and progressing through to base editing, such as CBE, ABE and PE, we have arrived at point mutations. These methods are regarded to have major commercial value for a wide range of applications, including medical treatment and animal and plant health. However, there has not been a method that can increase the expression level of important genes under donor-DNA-free conditions, or which can regulate spatial and temporal gene expression. The publication of this paper reveals a successful application of the gene knock-up system (KSE) created by KingAgroot for herbicide-resistant plant breeding. The technology is expected to have far-reaching influence in animal and plant health, and its value to the breeding industry sector will be equal to gene knock-out and base editing. This is an important breakthrough in genome editing achieved in China.
KingAgroot’s research has created a new type of application for CRISPR/Cas9, which will increase endogenous gene expression without an outside source or under artificial DNA conditions to obtain important traits, such as resistance to herbicides, disease resistance and the required yield and quality, therefore, providing a new approach to biological breeding. The broad future prospects for applications can then be predicted. KingAgroot is currently preparing to build a marine organism-oriented genome editing lab, where the patented technology will be applied, to substantially increase the productivity of high-value marine fish, shrimp and shellfish.
For the published paper, please click on:https://www.nature.com/articles/s41477-021-01019-4
Currently, the gene knock-up research-related achievements have les to the filing of three invention patents in China and 46 accumulative PCT patents in other countries or regions, including the US, EU and Australia.